In our new blog series, "Your Billing Company & You," we’ll be framing the relationship between providers and billing companies as just that…a relationship. We all have experiences in relationships, whether with friends, family, or romantic partners. Thinking of being in a relationship with your billing company is a useful exercise that can help you see them in a new light. This is relevant to all providers, whether you’re thinking of signing with a new company, maintaining your relationship with your current billing company, or considering “breaking up” and moving on to something new. Regardless of where you're at in your relationship, we’ll have some useful information for you!
"Am I doing my best?" Every relationship is a two-way street, and your relationship with your billing company should be no different. Don't treat your partner as a "set it and forget it" solution. Think about what you can do to make your billing company's job a little easier, which in turn will set your own organization up for success.
Below, I've compiled 4 best practices for doing your part to make your billing company relationship a harmonious one:
APPOINT A DEDICATED LIAISON
The daily hustle and bustle of running a treatment center can make it difficult to respond to your billing company if they have questions, need paperwork filled out, or require confirmation that payment was received. This is particularly true if no one person is being held accountable for maintaining this communication. I recommend having a dedicated employee on your end to serve as a billing company liaison to ensure these needs are met. This person should meet with your billing company on a regular basis so that nothing falls through the cracks, which my colleague Kaity recently covered in her blog about the importance of both parties maintaining transparency.
A lack of industry knowledge can make communicating with a billing company extremely difficult. Offer and encourage education among your staff to bridge that gap. It’s helpful for every team member to have a basic level of billing knowledge, so reach out to your billing company to ask if they offer training classes or, better yet, have a help center to assist with frequently asked questions. You may also want to consider collaborating with local treatment centers to swap information on state and local industry trends.
CREATE AN INTERNAL KNOWLEDGE DATABASE
Consider creating a wiki or knowledge base within your organization by utilizing platforms like Box, Google Docs or Microsoft SharePoint. This way, you can gather and store company resources in one location. Information gleaned from sources like payer newsletters, blogs, and conferences can be gathered and organized in a way that makes the most sense for your team.
MAKE SURE PAYERS HAVE THE CORRECT INFORMATION
I recommend that all providers own their relationships with the payers; however, it’s very common for providers to let third-parties register or update information on their behalf. Simply knowing what payers have on file for your organization will help you and your billing company avoid basic processing issues tied to inaccurate or missing provider demographics. Your billing company has more than likely run across this before, and should have tips for how to verify and update this information.
Check out "6 Questions You Should Be Asking Your Billing Company," a webinar created by Chris Reilly, Kenneth Throop, and Kaity McCraw from our Implementations team to learn more about you and your billing company can work together to achieve success.